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John Gibson
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Calgary
Alberta
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So I am seriously tackling the effort of designing a 2-player version of Infection, tentatively titled "Infection: Virus with a Brain"

Here are my rough notes. Please feel free to give feedback on what I have so far. I am trying to eliminate dice from the game so that the luck element is restricted to what cards the players draw and the tokens drawn from bags.

2-Player game:
• Player One (Scientist Player) tries to create vaccines to eliminate the virus
• Player Two (Virus Player) creates the virus and tries to destroy humanity

Components
• Game board with virus on it, shared by both players
• 2 player screens
• 2 player boards, each designed specifically for the player type
• Energy tokens
• Protein tokens used by Scientist Player + drawing bag
• Molecule tokens used by Virus Player + drawing bag
o Each molecule is unique (no duplicates)
o Has an identity (A, B, C, etc)
o A graphic display of all the proteins that make up the molecule
o A Creation Cost (for Virus Player)
o A Cure Value (for Scientist Player)
o A Resistance Value (for Virus Player)
• Molecule cards (one for each token) used by Virus Player
o They are double-sided: Incomplete and complete
o Has an identity (A, B, C, etc)
o A graphic display of all the proteins that make up the molecule
o An Infection Cost (for Virus Player)
o A Cure Value (for Scientist Player)
o A Resistance Value (for Virus Player)
• 2, 4 and 6 valued Energy bidding chits used by Virus Player
• 2 decks of cards, one for each player
• Various tokens—specific to player type—that are used in conjunction with the cards

Setup
• Place the game board in the center of the table
o The Virus and Scientist players sit across from each other, with board oriented correctly for each side.
• A resource pool of Energy tokens is placed beside the table within easy reach of both players
• Each player gets a deck of cards, shuffled, face down
• Each player gets a player screen
• Each player gets a player board that is hidden behind their screen
• Each player gets their allotted amount of Energy tokens and places them behind their player screen (probably the same amount at the beginning of the game)
• Each player gets a pile of various tokens to use within reach of that player
• Virus Player gets the Molecule tokens and drawing bag and cards
• Virus Player gets 3 Energy bidding chits
• Scientist Player gets Protein tokens and drawing bag
• Each player draws a hand of 3 cards from their player deck, keeping them hidden from the other player

Phases
• Infection Phase – Virus Player
o Required: The Virus Player draws 4 Molecule tokens from Molecule bag and places them on the Petri Dish on the virus side of the game board
o Required: The Virus Player plays a card from their hand, either face up or face down
 If played face down, then the action on the card does not take effect
 If played face up, then the action on the card takes effect immediately (or the action is available to the player for the turn)
 The Virus Player draws up a new card from their draw deck so they have 3 cards in their hand at the end of Infection Phase
o Optional: The Scientist Player may play a Reaction card from their hand that opposes the card just played by the Virus Player, and then draws a new card from their draw deck.
o Optional: The Virus Player may spend any amount of their Energy tokens to generate one or more of the molecules in the Petri Dish by paying the Infection Cost to the resource pool
 They place the molecule(s) they purchased onto the Virus on the game board
 They place the corresponding Molecule card(s) beside the board within easy reach of the Scientist Player, incomplete side up
o The Virus Player then announces their turn is over
• Research Phase – Scientist Player
o Required: The Scientist Player draws 4 Protein tokens from the Protein bag and places them on the Incubator spaces on the game board
o Required: The Scientist Player plays a card from their hand, either face up or face down
 If played face down, then the action on the card does not take effect
 If played face up, then the action on the card takes effect immediately (or the action is available to the player for the turn)
 The Scientist Player draws up a new card from their draw deck so they have 3 cards in their hand at the end of Research Phase
o Optional: The Virus Player may play a Reaction card from their hand that opposes the card just played by the Scientist Player, and then draws a new card from their draw deck.
o Optional: The Scientist Player may spend their Energy tokens to the surplus pile to obtain proteins from the Incubator
 They must place the obtained proteins onto the Molecule cards beside the game board
 If placing a protein on a Molecule card completes it, then the Scientist Player removes the proteins and places them in a discard pile, then flips the Molecule card over to the complete side/Antibody side
o Optional: The Scientist Player may use a completed Antibody card to destroy the matching Molecule on the virus. The Scientist Player does this by taking the molecule off the virus and placing it on the Antibody card. The Scientist Player then immediately receives the Cure Value of the molecule in Energy tokens
o The Scientist Player then announces their turn is over
• Contagion Phase – Virus Player
o Required: The Virus Player receives Energy tokens equal to the combined value of all the Molecule Resistance Values still on the virus
• Containment Phase – All players
o This phase determines if the virus is contained or not. Each player takes zero or more Energy tokens into their hand—the amounts hidden by the player shield—and then holds out their hand, fist closed. The virus player will also have a reusable bidding chip whose value is based on the current stage of the Death Toll track. At the same time both players reveal how many energy tokens they have in their hand.
 If the Scientist Player has the most Energy tokens or is tied, then Containment of the virus has been obtained and Death Toll track does not advance
 If the Virus Player has the most Energy tokens, then virus has not been contained—it spreads—and the Death Toll marker advances one space on the track.
 Both players lose the Energy tokens that they bid to the resource pile. The Virus player gets to keep their bidding chip.
• Budget Grant Phase – Scientist Player
o The Scientist Player receives Energy tokens equal to the Grant amount of the Death Toll track
• Cleanup Phase – All players
o The Scientist player takes all the unused Proteins from the Incubator and puts them face up in a discard pile, then draws 4 new ones from the Protein bag and places them on the Incubator.
o The Virus player takes all the unused Molecules from the Petri Dish and puts them face up in a discard pile, then draws 4 new ones from the Molecule bag places them on the Petri Dish.

Notes
• Each player starts off with energy tokens, which will be physical chits
o Each player might get the same amount, or the virus player might get more?
• Each player gets a player screen to hide their energy tokens, plus anything else we might want to keep hidden
o Each screen would be specific to the player, with a player aid on the inside of the screen
o Each player would get a player board for arranging components they use that they want to keep secret.
• Each player’s deck would have the same number of cards
o The Scientist player’s cards would be based upon the Status Report cards, Lab Equipment cards and Lab Personnel cards in the solitaire game
o The Virus player’s cards would be based upon the lab effects of the Status Report cards in the solitaire game.
o There would be Reaction cards in both decks that players could play to oppose an action played by the other player
• The goal would be to make the game take about an hour or less to play.
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